Assembling and aligning stakeholders with political influence and societal trust that bring credibility to the Water Fund and helps the institution initiate interventions. This includes stakeholders from the private companies, academia, civil society and the public sector all engaging at different levels of participation with the Water Fund (some as partners, some as promoters and some as allies). Work in this area is focused primarily on the Water Fund’s initial set-up, but may also be necessary in the early phases of interventions to assemble/organize relevant stakeholder support for these initiatives.
Why is this necessary?
Multi-stakeholder governance is an essential component of every Water Fund. Governance refers to both (1) the processes and rules for decision-making within a Water Fund itself, and (2) the actions a Water Fund can take to influence the overarching governance context within which it is operating (e.g. influencing public policy).
This focus on both the internal and external water governance context requires a range of engagements, analyses, agreements, plans, and actions be taken. These areas of focus are outlined below.
Multi-Stakeholder Governance is an ongoing process through which conflicting or diverse interests may be accommodated and cooperative action may be taken. This form of governance requires that (a.) both public and private stakeholders hold the will or accept a broad framework through which they manage their business and (b.) there is a process through which negotiation can occur and power can be balanced.
Guidance related to governance in this Toolbox is generally provided around the following areas:
There are a range of analyses and processes that are undertaken across the Water Funds Project Cycle to ensure all relevant stakeholders of a Water Fund are engaged and provided with opportunities to contribute. This includes actions such as analyzing/mapping stakeholders, engagement techniques, and sustaining participation over the long-term.
Exploring and structuring partnerships is typically a big part of developing a Water Fund. Guidance is provided on key principles of effective partnerships and the experience of developing partnerships from different Water Funds around the world.
Legal and Institutional Analyses
Legal and institutional conditions are analyzed in an increasingly amount of detail across the Water Funds Project Cycle. These conditions are critical to analyze as they will ultimately affect how the governance system of the Water Fund is structured and how the Water Fund will operate in its local and regional context.
Governance and Legal Models
Water Funds are expected to evolve through a range of legal structures, beginning with simple agreements and then moving towards more sophisticated legal structures. A range of Governance and Legal Models are typically explored to identify the optimum governing structure of the Water Fund, while not limiting or unduly constraining the interaction it may have with relevant governing bodies.
Establishing the credibility of a Water Fund means that strategic actions are being taken to build the reputation of a Water Fund as a credible entity that can help enhance the region's water security. Once established as a relevant contributor, the Water Fund will increase its ability to influence public policy, mobilize stakeholders and contribute to water governance, ultimately unlocking the potential to create significant impacts at scale.
Multi-stakeholder governance within the 5 phases of the Water Fund Project Cycle:
Phase 1: Feasibility
The Feasibility Phase includes two 'checks' to test if a Water Fund is the right water security tool. First, a test of 'eligibility' is completed by quickly determining if there are water security challenges and a potential for a Water Fund to help. If yes, feasibility is then explored further by developing a deeper understanding of the situation and generally how a Water Fund could positively contribute to water security within the defined area.
The purpose of a Situation Analysis is to: (a) assess the feasibility of a Water Fund (by more deeply understanding the situation); and (b) generally determine how a Water Fund could positively contribute to water security within a defined area/region.
Prior to initiating the design of the Water Fund, several key actions should be taken to assure that sufficient resources and capacity exist to sustain the momentum behind the Water Fund and the completion of its design. This level of assurance can be achieved by securing formal commitments to advocate for and/or resource the design of the Water Fund, as well as the hiring of a Water Fund Director.
Phase 2: Design
The Design Phase is undertaken to develop the best solutions for the identified water security issues and to choose the appropriate water fund configuration which accounts for key technical issues, financial considerations, governance dimensions and strives for maximum impact.
Water Fund Boards are established as the decision-making authority that will take responsibility for the Water Fund's goals. Specifically, these Boards and the corresponding governance document (e.g. Charter) are established to:
1.Establish the principles under which Water Funds will operate.
2.Establish the Governancemechanisms by which Water Funds will operate, including identifying: (a.) key decision-making processes and (b.) the roles and responsibilities of the individuals and groups.
3. Assure Partners and Investors – A Charter or similar document will assure Water Fund participants and other stakeholders that Water Funds will be managed and operated in an efficient, effective and appropriate manner so as to increase the potential to improve water security and avoid unreasonable risks.
To start the process of creating the Water Fund's legal mechanism, such as establishing the Water Fund as a 'legal entity' within its operating jurisdiction. Depending on local legal requirements, this process may take an extended period of time, even up to and through the Creation Phase.
A Water Fund Strategic Plan is created to establish a long term (5-year) plan that creates clarity, focus and a shared roadmap for implementing important strategic choices made by the leadership of a Water Fund.
The purpose of Clarifying the Challenge is to be clear on: 1) how to define the challenges the Water Fund is going to help address, 2) what success looks like and how the Water Fund contributes to that success, 3) how to identify the risks and obstacles and how they can be mitigated/navigated, and 4) how to formulate the Water Fund’s strategy, objectives, and 5-year goals by tangible actions the Water Fund will conduct.
The purpose of supporting interventions is to: 1) establish engagement plans per stakeholder category and high-level protocols for communications, 2) create a plan to secure resources (i.e., fundraising/financing), and 3) to develop a 5-year roadmap to track milestone progress toward the Water Fund goals.
Phase 3: Creation
The Creation Phase is undertaken to formalize and publicly launch the water fund.
To ensure that relevant actions are taken to ensure the Water Fund is legally constituted.
Phase 4: Operation
The Operation Phase is undertaken to establish stability by developing and implementing a comprehensive work plan, which guides systematic execution of activities, measurement and evaluation, and communication of progress towards the goals of the water fund. These activities should be continuously improved through adaptive management, refinements, and innovation.
The Annual Operating Plan addresses key aspects related to operating the Water Fund, including technical matters, marketing and communication, stakeholder engagement, fundraising, administration of the Water Fund, quality assurance, adaptive management, innovation, and planning.
Phase 5: Maturity
The Maturity Phase is a determination that assures the long-term viability of the water fund to create significant and lasting impact that positively contributes to water security.